RECONSTRUCTION

By Trudy A. Martinez

According to The American College Dictionary to reconstruct means to construct again; to rebuild; make over. What happens in the South following the Civil War does not meet the definition of reconstruction.  It is only a means of pacifying the guilt of those who originally profit from the slave trade. The actions they take are calculating, necessary moves that prove profitable, once again, for the North, the rich, and the rising upper-middle-class, the bourgeoisie, allowing their entrance into Industrialization. It is a means of gain from the misfortune of the southerners, the poor whites, and the blacks; a means of appeasement; an influx of Hope; a road block to revolution.

History dictates, as long as there is Hope for a better future, the common people will accept the hard times and the struggle to obtain and improve their status. How else can the government justify its action of freeing the salves, while at the same time, breaking the promise of 40 acres and a mule? The blacks are left with nothing more than the Hope of achieving a better tomorrow at the mercy of their previous owners, the Southern Elite.

The Freedman Bureau, a token agency (backed by the government, influenced by the rich, but yet, limited), was expected to achieve the impossible. From the beginning, the bureau has three strikes against it; it offers only hope and token justice by controlling the impersonal forces that determine history. One can only wonder if this is why President Lincoln, the role model for the common man, lost his life. Was the President’s death also determined by of one of those impersonal forces upon history? Did Lincoln make his strategy for reconstruction of our torn country known to the wrong people? These are questions for which we may never find the answers? Violence and a strong middle-class objection always pave the way for change in America, that is, when the change does not benefit the rich and the upper-middle-class.

In America (the land of the free, the government of the people), freedom is never a problem, or is it? Does a government of the people mean all the people: the common people, the blacks too? In 1865, is freedom a myth?

Guilt and restitution for the sins of the past alone does not free the slaves; it is a combination of greed and the desire to follow the footsteps of our mother county, England, into the Industrial Revolution. The slave trade is not just a source of guilt, but also a hindrance to progress placed on society by the greed of the past Northern Elite. The slaves only need to be free, no longer owned like cattle or a piece of property. What happens to the slaves after they are free is of no real concern to the Northern elite. True freedom is a luxury of the rich; one can only acquire freedom through status, prestige, or money; it is not a common man’s commodity.

Look at our past, the evidence is there. Our government is not a government of the people, at least not the common people, as the government wants us to believe; instead we are a government of the rich, the prestigious, the corrupt, the greedy, and the bourgeoisie. Our government is governed by the desires and whims of the rich. The common people are not a concern of the government until their Hope begins to fade; threats of revolution are in evidence by violence, loss of lives, and the voice of the middle-class objections are heard loud and clear.

Our sense of Nationalistic thinking begins with the birth of our flag, the red, white, and blue, signifying the blood, sweat, and tears of our fore fathers who win freedom from our mother country, England; they establish our Constitutional government, our Republic, by which the freedom of all the people are insured and protected. With this Nationalistic thinking, the common people are programmed to think they are unique, free, equal, and that truth and justice prevail; they are one nation, with a common goal. That thinking remains true until the north desires to enter venture into the industrialization of America. Then our common goal is obliterated.

The South didn’t cooperate. The South didn’t want to progress; it was enjoying all the advantages of slavery; it didn’t want to change; its goals differ. The violence of the Civil War is necessary before change can occur to achieve the desires of the Northern rich, to progress, to go forward, and to increase their wealth. The rich control the government; they want change only if it is beneficial to them, not when they pay a cost. The Civil War is a disagreement between the Southern rich and the Northern rich. In America, the rich grow richer at the expense of the poor, the working class, the common man, and the ethnic groups. The more blood, sweat, and tears the common man sheds, the wealthier the rich become. With the emancipation of the slaves, the Northern rich can induce the government into establishing a (forced) public education system. This education of the masses is a necessity for progress (if Industrialization is to occur) and for the rich to prosper from it.

When it becomes evident the common people are more than eager to learn, not only does education need controls, but also limits to and for those segments of society that are to become the working class of the Industrialization. The schools brain-wash the minds of the people by increasing the Nationalistic theme, i.e., to become one, together, with one goal, to increase the wealth of the nation, to build on the American Dream (the programmed dream: as long as we try, work hard; we will get ahead), a new article of faith, a myth. The owners of the means of production and progress keep it that way (a myth) by resisting payment of the true value of labor and by not sharing the wealth with those who make it possible for them to obtain it.

The Industrialization of America is a boom for the rich. They justify their mistreatment of the working class, depriving them of the fruits of their labor, through the practice and acceptance of Social Darwinism (survival of the fittest).

The American government, the government of the people, during times of trouble, during hard times, turns its back on the needs of the common people, the working classes, i.e., the poor whites, the blacks, the Hispanics, the women, and the children. While simultaneously denying the acceptance and practice of the theories of Darwinism, the government allows the unjust practices of industry whose roots are in the theories of Social Darwinism. Why? Because, the theories and practice of “Social Darwinism” allow for a natural selection of the fittest, justifying the actions of the rich by allowing them to capitalize at the expense of the working class, the common people. Masses of wealth accumulate, as a result. So much wealth accumulates that the rich find it necessary to plan their next greedy step into what they refer to as progress, Imperialism.

In conclusion and in my opinion, to reconstitute the government would have been better solutions in 1865, i.e., reconstruct the government, not just the South, but the North as well. The radicals could have gotten the backing of the masses, but fear stood in their way. Fear of revolution like the one unleashed in France in the year 1797. The radicals chose compromise at the expense and suffering of all future generations instead of facing the enviable, the necessity of change, i.e., of defining “freedom”, of defining “the government of the people” and achieving a real government of the people, the common people, all the people. Through the ending of injustice, invoking controls on the greedy, forcing “the owners of the means of production” to pay the true value of the labor and thereby, alleviating the unnecessary blood, sweat, and tears of the working classes, the aim of a government for all the people may achieve. One can only envision the outcome of what such a change might mean to America, i.e., utopia, little or no unemployment, rapid growth, and increased stability, a sense of pride surpassing the Nationalistic theme that gives a sense of false pride and of false reality.

Regardless, America achieves what no other country has ever accomplished: We remain strong and resolute irrespective of our faults. And we will continue to do so as long as we have Hope.

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How Does American Myths’ Help Americans AVOID Their Individual Responsibility to Society in Social, Political, and Economical Issues and Problems?

By Trudy A. Martinez

“How does the American ‘Myths’ help Americans Avoid their individual responsibility to society in social, political, and economic issues and problems?”

In behest to the rationality of the connotation of this question, first we must probe the influence and ramification of world history upon present day America and fathom the affects of ideology upon the existence and worth of an individual. Then we must identify the myths and identify the process by which the myths have eroded and separated man from himself leaving him confused, bewildered, and overwhelmed. Through erudition and perspicacity of identification, the myths’ hindrance to man as an entity and probable cause for man’s avoidance of responsibility and obligation as a citizen of the United States may become apparent.

The American society has set a precedent in the history of nations; it has held together without revolution even though the people may be oppressed because the people never lose their “hope” for a better tomorrow (Chapter 19). Why is this hope retained in times of oppression? The explanation to this consideration is difficult as its resolution is an organization of theory.

The ideals were born in the age of the Enlightenment, the age of reason, the late seventeenth century. The ideology of one man, in particular, played an important role when he contributed to Western civilization the Two Treatises of Government, This man was John Locke; his radical change in governmental ideals introduced the concept of a contract between the government and the people, a concept where the people gave the government the power and the people would have the right to remove the government, if their right of “Life, Liberty, and Property” were not protected. Locke’s concept has “a passive affect, man is driven, the object of motivations of which he himself is not aware” (Fromm 18). It is a concept whereby a few govern the masses. One hundred years after Locke introduced his concept of government to the world; these same ideals were adopted by a new nation, America, when Thomas Jefferson wrote the “Declaration of Independence” using Locke’s principles. It was Locke’s principles that helped to shape the foundation of Democracy in America.

In addition to these principles, the pluralities of America’s fore fathers were authentic in concern. They desired a sovereignty that would confer regulation of the power to the people, for the people; this philosophy is confirmation of the theme and sincere interpretation of the Constitution. But, the Constitution was distinguished in a sovereignty clique with the abstraction of Locke’s ideology braced with a notion of “sameness’ and the impression of a strict moral code with the execution of purism. The notion of “sameness” was descended and stimulated by the doctrines of Calvinism. “Sameness” has become an agitator to common man’s search for oneness because of the aristocracy and the American elite’s aspiration. As a result of the arrangement of the new nation being contrived by the combination of these perceptions, the edifice of bureaucracy became a religion based upon natural law, reason, and the hopefulness of common man to achieve the same aspiration. The framers had created “stability” for their own interest.

Machiavelli’s benefaction in the early sixteenth century of the Prince concocted an insurrection in bureaucratic contemplation that cannot be left without attention since its placid idiosyncrasy has had extensive application in the bipartisan deliberation of the bureaucratic process in America in this century and has shifted consequential prejudice upon the world. Machiavelli’s Prince may be a panorama of repercussion of the mercenary gyrations of the late fifteenth century. The mercenary rotation accentuated commerce and was the initial constitute of capitalism. The Prince furnished “devious” man a system of jurisdiction over common man through forceful adeptness and evasive idiosyncrasy of posterity.

The American “National flag parallels the . . . origin of our country” (92nd Congress, 2D Session House Document No 92-376, Our Flag), America. The new nation of America was conceived from the “birthright from the peoples of many lands”(Our Flag 1), “Pluralism”, and the symbolic meaning of the “Stars and Stripes” contrived from “several origins back in the mists of antiquity to become emblazoned on the standards of our . . . Republic”(Our Flag 1).
“The star is a symbol of the heavens . . . the stripes is symbolic of . . . the rays of light emanating from the sun. Both themes . . . represented . . . the banners of the astral worshippers of ancient Egypt and Babylon . . .

The first flag of the colonists to have any resemblance to the present Stars and Stripes was the Grand Union Flag, sometimes referred to as the ‘Congress Colors’. It consisted of thirteen stripes, alternately red and white, representing the Thirteen Colonies, with a blue field in the upper left hand corner bearing the crosses of St. George and St. Andrew, signifying union with the mother country. This banner was first flown by the ships at Colonial Fleet in the Delaware. . .

The resolution of 14 June 1777 establishing the Stars and Stripes has an interesting history. After the Declaration of Independence, colonial vessels were putting to sea to hamper enemy communications and prey on British commerce. Many of them flew the flags of the particular Colonies to which they belonged. It was necessary to provide an authorized national flag under which they could sail, for England considered armed vessels without such a flag as pirate ships and hanged their crews when the captured them. So the Marine Committee of the Second Continental Congress presented the Resolution” (Our Flag 1-3).

The system by which the sovereignty clique discontinue common man’s conception of revolt is through a fantasy, formulated by the flag. The flag became a necessity to the new nation to prevent her mother country, England, from considering the colonial vessels as pirate ships and hanging their crews when they were captured. This tidbit of fact detailing how and why America adopted a national flag has a stench of collusion because not only did the flag become the emblem of the consolidation of the colonies, but it was also became the mechanism that inaugurated patriotism, the means by which the people were maneuvered by the Imperial force, Nationalism, delivering an individual through optimism into contention with an infinite quantity of objective forces (impersonal forces) joined together in harmony and charted to confuse, bewilder, and overwhelm the common man and deliver him into submission of the greedy ambitions of the affluent. As a result of man’s agony perplexed by the overwhelming impersonal forces, common man was and still is forced to conform or seek escape from his reality through the escape mechanism. Common man ceased to be an individual with a free choice; the freedom guaranteed by the constitution eludes his grasp.

The impersonal forces, the myths, gained their overwhelming strength following the Civil War when America changed from an Agrarian Society to a Capitalistic Society. Industrialization had been a drastic calculated change. The American elite had learned from the past, Anatole France. They prepared Americans to withstand the agony of oppression and thereby released elite man from the fear of revolution of the masses. Industrialization brought out the worse in man; it also produced or introduced a family of new “hope”, allowing subordination-ism of the impersonal forces that were driven by the Imperial Force, Nationalism. The impersonal forces are dependent and reliant on the existence of the Imperial Force, to guide both the rich and the poor to their destiny. The forces allowed America to go forward into progressivism which caused man to replace or alter his value system. It was undermined by radicalism, fueled by greed, and chosen as an alternative to revolution.

The New Article of Faith (progressivism) created a double standard, one for the individuals, and one for progressivism; one for the rich and one for the poor. From the origin of the Impersonal Force had come the birth of a “myth”, the “American Dream”, to strengthen the “Red, White, and Blue”. And give a continuing influx of internal “Hope” for a better tomorrow. A “’Pledge of Allegiance’ to the Flag” originated in 1892, it was first used in public schools in celebration of Columbus Day, 12 October 1892. . . Official recognition was received by congress in . . . 1942. . . The phrase ‘under God’ was added 14 June 1954. . . President Eisenhower said . . . in this way we are reaffirming the transcendence of religious faith in America’s heritage and future; in this way we shall constantly strengthen those spiritual weapons which will be our country’s most powerful resource . . .”(Our Flag) Greed was added to virtue as a quality to advance common man to a higher status. Greed was the major cause of the oppression of man. A mandatory school system was the formula of suppressant that affirmed the governing of the opinion and knowledge of individuals during their impressionable years through the psychological science of Behaviorism. According to Erich Fromm, a modern-day Philosopher, “Knowledge is thought, psychological knowledge, is a necessary condition for full knowledge . . . while the great popularity of psychology certainly indicates an interest in the knowledge of man, it also betrays the fundamental lack of love in human relations today. Psychological knowledge thus becomes a substitute for full knowledge in the act of love, instead of being a step toward it” (Fromm 26). For the “rich” the imperial Force introduced Capitalism, and Conservatism, earned through the mastery of Behaviorism, justified through the practice of Darwinism and gained through application of Economic Expansionism, insured through Journalism, and ultimately reaffirmed through Freudianism. For the “rich” the Imperial Force produced Humanism as restitution for guilt; and Sexism as a symbol of superiority over maternal-ism. The use of behavioral tactics in the lower division school system is an aspect that presents a problem today.

Once the behavioral patterns are learned through the mandatory public school systems, it takes a stick of dynamite, near the brain of an individual, to release an individual from the influence of the myths so that their thought processes are actually their own . Behaviorism was a very effective tool to insure the future from revolution; it was and still is a method to control the masses. The myths were guided by the Imperial Force and for the poor and rising it introduced: Patriotism, gained through citizenship, Individualism, to replace the uniqueness of man, gained through a falsified freedom and restricting common man’s free will; Optimism, established by desire and reassured by achievements; and ultimately consumerism, propaganda, as reward for progress, and materialism as a symbol of acceptance of the new national religion. As “hope” for despair, it created populism (evolved to welfare); as an explanation of common man’s dilemma, it created narcissism (evolved to Freudianism); as an alternative to struggle, it created socialism (slated for deletion); as an artificial retaliation to capitalism; it created Marxism (evolving to capitalism, leaving man with no alternative but to conform to capitalism, consumerism or TV-ism); as an escape from reality, it created alcoholism and eventually drug-ism and TV-ism as alcoholism proved to no longer created a realistic escape from the reality of modern society; as a means of gain through despair for submission, it created sexism (evolved to racism and victim-ism). In modern society of Capitalism the current thought is toward natal-ism to alleviate the problems created by the escape mechanisms; the problems of large segments of society producing inferior specimens creates a state of welfare larger than that portion of society paying taxes, to reduce the growing welfare drastic steps are being considered to control the affects at birth.

The interest stirred by other countries in Americas system of government is perplexing when you consider the rich hope to take over the world in the same manner that they have taken control of millions of Americans. On a radio talk show, Sept. 1, 1990, there was an interview with a foreign school teacher, who said the school books in the first grades were being replaced and the prior books being destroyed. The new books reflect history different because the new regime, now under American influence, didn’t want the children to know the truth about the past. The revolutionary facts had to be removed; part of history had to be deleted as if it never existed. Sound familiar? Wasn’t the history of America glossed over and the truth slowly discovered by historians?

According to The American College Dictionary nation means:
1. An aggregation of persons of the same ethnic family, speaking the same language of cognate languages.
2. It belongs to a body of people associated with a particular territory who are sufficiently conscious of their unity to seek or to possess a government peculiarly their own.
3. The Indian nation is considered.
This definition is odd when you consider the first definition doesn’t fit the American society and the dictionary is an “American” dictionary. When you take the order of sequence in analysis, you get a different perspective:
1. The nation belongs to the few, the rich, the social elite
2. It belongs to a body of people associated with a particular territory who are sufficiently conscious of their unity to seek or to possess a government peculiarly their own.
3. The Indian nation is considered.
Why would an American dictionary list the first meaning with an application other than the American society? Is not the answer to the question apparent? Doesn’t the definition as presented imply the answer?

Why didn’t the framers of the American government consider the ideas of other philosophers such as Spinoza, the Dutch Philosopher? Were the framers aware that Tom Jefferson writing of the Declaration of Independence was actually the ideology of Locke? Was their fear of revolution a selfish consideration of the framers? Spinoza’s concept of freedom differed from the ideas of our fore fathers and Locke’s concept. Spinoza’s concept had “an Active affect, man is freed, he is the master of his affect” (Fromm 18). Whereas, the concept of the American society has “a passive affect, man is driven, the object of motivations of which he himself is not aware” (Fromm 18). “Spinoza arrives at the statement that virtue and power are one and the same. Envy, Jealousy, ambition, any kind of greed are passions; love is an action, the practice of a human power, which can be practiced only in freedom and never as a result of compulsion” (Fromm 18).

In conclusion and in my opinion, influence and the ramification of world history had a critical bearing up the construction of the American order. The affects of the ideology of Locke in amalgamation with some countenance of Calvinism, Puritanism, purism and Machiavelli, had a numbing seize upon common man by controlling common man’s freedom and striking unconstitutional authority over him through the execution of behaviorism. America has been an archetype for the world; it was conjectured, a design to emancipate the world unto Capitalism, a one world denomination. Machiavelli, Calvinism, Puritanism, purism, and man’s own urge to recapture paradise, are the justification for common man’s persecution by a sovereignty clique. The amalgamation of influence and ideology established the echelon for the admission of the main characteristic, the myth. To fortify the myth, for a lingering future without revolution, compulsory school routine taught the adolescence of the country through behaviorism, deriving the individual of their free choice, the freedom attested to by the constitution. The Americans now avoid their individual responsibility to society in social, political, and economic issues and problems because they are oblivious of their rightful position; they have striven to challenge the strategy and became bewildered; they perceive no manner without semblance of disillusioned disloyalty; or they have confused preoccupation in the issues and problems, the intricacy does not affect him; they fitting don’t have liberty laboring two occupations simply to survive; or they are overwhelmed with daily demands. The stability of the system is endured through the balance of impersonal forces, just as the stability of a nation is ensured through the balance of trade.

 

Reference Sources:

A Tale of Two Cities. By Charles Dickens.
World Classics edition, Oxford University Press
The Art of Loving. By Erich Fromm
Perennial Library Edition. Volume IX of the World Perspectives Series,
Edited by Ruth Nanda Ashen, Harper Row
Our Flag. 92d Congress, 2d Session, House Document No 92-376.
U.S. Government Printing.
The President of the United States of America. By Brank Freidel,
White House Historical Association with the cooperation of the National Geographic Society.
Government by the People. By Burns/Peltason/Cronin. Thirteenth Alternate Edition-1989
Printing, Prentice Hall.
The National Experience, Part II. A history of the United States since 1865. Seventh Edition.
By John M. Blum, W. S. McFeely, E.S. Morgan, A.M. Schlesinger, Jr. K.M. Stampp, C. V. Woodward. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Publishers.
Class Handouts and Assignments, Cerro Coso Community College, Western Civilization,
Springs 1990, Winchester, England, Instructor: Leo Girodit.

Political Science I, Cerro Coso Community College, Fall 1990, Dr. Don Rosenberg